FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Florida Gulf Coast University women’s volleyball team suffered its first Atlantic Sun Conference loss of the season Saturday night at Alico Arena.
Lipscomb (8-3, 5-0) topped the Eagles 3-0 (25-21, 25-22, 25-18) to move into sole possession of first place in the conference.
FGCU (6-6, 5-1) is now alone in second place in the A-Sun.
The match marked the first time that the Eagles were swept at home in A-Sun conference play.
“Lipscomb didn’t give us anything,” FGCU coach Dave Nichols said. “This is how we have been playing lately. They were way ahead of us in trust, communication and discipline.”
Nichols did not think the team suffered any ill effects from its hard fought, five set win over Belmont on Friday night at Alico Arena.
The Eagles opened a 7-4 lead in the first set after an ace by senior Chandra Lefever (Fort Morgan, Colo.). A monster kill by junior Jelena Simic (Lazarevec, Serbia) bolstered FGCU to a 10-9 lead but Lipscomb ripped off four consecutive points forcing FGCU to call timeout. The Bisons stretched that lead to 19-12 before Nichols called another timeout for the Eagles. Lefever’s second ace got FGCU within five at 19-14 and senior Ashley Yance (Fort Myers, Fla.) blasted a kill to trim the Bison lead to 19-15. A kill from Simic made the score 20-19 and another kill from Simic brought FGCU back within two at 24-22 but Lipscomb’s Kaycee Green gave the Bisons a 25-22 set one victory with a kill.
Lipscomb opened an early lead in the second set that was cut to 7-5 thanks to a kill from junior Jacqueline Cowden (Danville, Calif.). Sophomore Anna Wagner (Lincoln, Neb.) cut the Bison lead to 12-10 with a kill and later a kill by Lefever put the Eagles up 18-15. After a timeout, the Bisons ripped off six straight points to take a 21-18 lead and take command of the set. The Bisons won the set 25-21.
FGCU fell behind 6-1 in the third and final set prompting a timeout from Nichols. Eagle freshman Brittany Muse (Arcadia, Fla.) had four kills in the third set, the last of which pulled FGCU within six at 21-15. Lipscomb called timeout as FGCU cut the lead to 22-17 but an ace by Greene ended the match as it gave the Bisons a 25-18 third set victory.
The A-Sun’s top two teams will meet again October 23 in Nashville, Tennessee.
The Eagles will continue their pursuit of their third consecutive A-Sun regular season championship when they take on Jacksonville on the road next Friday. They will take on North Florida in Jacksonville the following night.
FGCU’s next home contest will be against Mercer on October 8 at 7 p.m. at Alico Arena.